Let’s have a quick lesson in popular hip-hop dances from the previous decade.
This is the Harlem Shake:
Now lets have a quick lesson in popular memes that have surfaced on YouTube that involve using the name of a popular hip-hop dance from the ‘90s.
This is not the Harlem Shake:
If you haven’t been living under a rock, you may have noticed these “Harlem Shake” meme videos posted on various social media sites of people doing everything but the Harlem Shake. According to Know Your Meme, “Harlem Shake” is the title of a 2012 bass track produced by Baauer, and although you’d expect a whole lot of Harlem Shaking to go on, that’s not always the case.
With a quick search on YouTube, you’ll notice that most of the videos seem to be done by college students, apparently college students with a lot of time on their hands. But then this happened:
I’m going to go out on a limb and ask, WWMD (what would Mase do)? Would he refer to this as “hip-hop appropriation”? I only ask because I see this term thrown around the Clutch comment section so often. Or are these people just cooning on YouTube, the way so many people suggested about Sweet Brown yesterday?
In any event, let the record show that this is not the Harlem Shake I know of. Albeit, some of the videos are funny and can garner a laugh or two:
There are just others that aren’t.
I’ll sit sit back and wait for Mase to come out of hiding to show people how it’s actually done.